Thursday, December 13, 2012

5 Quick And Easy Tips To Prepare Meals For Weight Loss

Losing weight is all about reducing calories and burning fat. It definitely takes effort to meet your weight loss goal but there are simple things you can do to raise your chances of success. These tricks only require less than a minute to do. As you go about your daily business, just integrate these tips into your life and soon, the weight will start coming off. These tips will compliment whatever weight loss program you are currently pursuing and will help boost your efforts.

The first tip has to do with flaxseed. The next time you have breakfast, add a little ground flaxseed to your cold cereal, hot cereal, yogurt, muffins, smoothies, pancakes, waffles and bread mixes. This source of high fiber and protein, will keep you from feeling hungry. This is one way to suppress your appetite and keep you from taking in too much calories. It is available at the health food stores.

Next tip is to drink green tea before exercising. Apparently you can burn more fat if you do this. The caffeine in green tea frees the fatty acids from the adipose tissue and therefore, makes them more available to be burned when exercising. Also, it contains an antioxidant called polyphenols which work together with caffeine to boost calorie burning. However, a word of warning, green tea is not recommended if you suffer from high blood pressure.

Do you love to spread butter on your bread or use butter in your cooking? Well, a healthier choice would be to replace butter with olive oil. In a study, participants either used butter or an olive oil dip for their bread. Those that dipped their bread in olive oil ended up consuming an average of 52 calories less than those who ate butter.

[caption id="attachment_273" align="aligncenter" width="500"]Weight Loss Meals Image Attribution[/caption]

When you eat a salad, how are the ingredients prepared? Do you slice or shred it to small sizes or chopped them into big chunks? The trick is to leave your veggies as big pieces because that will require more effort in chewing. You'll end up eating less during your main meal. The same goes for soup. When your soup contains big vegetable pieces, you'll feel more full and eat less of the next dish. So, opt for chunky soups instead of pureed ones.

One last tip; make it a habit of dabbing the fat and oil off your food, especially if it has been fried. Did you know, by dabbing 2 slices of pizza, you can eliminate about 1 tsp of oil? That is 40 calories and 4.5 grams of fat. Such a simple thing to do but has far reaching effects on your weight loss effort.

If you want to look great in your clothes, you need to start losing weight. Check out this weight loss solution that is clinically proven to work.

Wednesday, December 5, 2012

Lose Weight To Reduce Hospitalization Visits

Do you know what is your body mass index (BMI) point? It is one way to know if you're overweight or obese. An Australian research published in the International Journal of Obesity found that heavier people had more episodes of hospitalization compared to those within the normal BMI range. Example of health problems that heavier people are being hospitalized for are diabetes, heart disease, arthritis, asthma and chest pain.

What does this mean to you? Try not to be overweight. And if you are, take steps to lose that extra weight and you'll be decreasing your risk of hospital visits for a variety of health problems. Even small differences in your weight may make a big impact on your health.

You are overweight if your BMI is between 25 to 30. If your BMI is over 30, you are obese.

Thursday, November 29, 2012

How Effective Is hCG Diet In Weight Loss

In this post on hCG Diets, we're going to go over the subject of weight loss. Weight loss is now one of the highest profit making business today. People around the world are taking slimming products and investing in fitness equipment to get in shape. Say what you will but, unless you find a program that works for you, everyone would want to try any product out of desperation. Maybe we can't see the results in the next few days. Some of you don't have the time to determine a more effective way to boost your metabolism that ends with a lesser risk of obesity.

HCG Diet
You may have to mull over signing up weight loss program or even want to try hCG Diet since that is a lot more that the market can offer. Actually, you don't need to rush. I can understand that you can't stop thinking about burning those calories.

hCG Diet may work provided that you follow the instruction. This is one area where people fail to do. It is fact for any weight reduction plan.

Many people have tried hCG Diets and lost a exceptional amount of pounds. This was nothing new as it existed since 1954. It is only after Kevin Trudeau, revealed this special food program in his book, "The Weight Loss Cure" that it became popular.

In "The Weight Loss Cure", Trudeau capitalizes on the research and findings of the late Dr. A.T.W Simeon, who discover astonishing, weight loss breakthroughs in overweight patients. For years, Dr. Simeon injected obese subjects with hCG (Human Chorionic Gonadotropin), a hormone only produced during pregnancies. He was thrilled with what he witnessed.

You can begin with a low calorie diet (500 energy per day) to complement with hCG Diets. This will help you to remove excess fat, and begin to transform your unfavored body shape into one that your friends will be envious. Furthermore, this diet change will result in a higher metabolism, which is important in burning calories.

Weight problems are becoming a significant issue today. hCG Diets may appear to be an ideal solution to your ailing health. Weight problems is the cause of many medical conditions such as diabetes, coronary heart attacks and strokes. Psychologically, overweight can lead to low self-esteem and lack of confidence. The truth that those who adopt hCG Diets are likely to reach a healthy weight.

It may seen an effortless task. But as for any safe weight loss, it requires effort as well. Becoming slim is not going to be easy. With hCG diet and a regular exercise program, you have a better chance to lose those stubborn fats.

Thursday, November 22, 2012

5 Benefits Of Interval Training

Exercise is important but if you want to see a real difference in your weight and stamina, how you exercise is important. These days, walking or jogging at a steady speed for 45 minutes is considered a less efficient way of exercising. The better way is interval training. Interval training means alternating between short bursts of high intensity training and rest periods. For example, for half an hour, you alternate between running as fast as you can for 30 seconds and then slowing down to a jog for 1 minute.

Interval Training
Here are 5 reasons why you should consider adding interval training to your exercise routine.

  1. It helps you get rid of that stubborn abdominal fat. The International Journal of Obesity published a research that shows interval training targets your waistline. So, if you want to fit into that skinny pants again, do some interval training.

  2. Takes less time to exercise. If you're a busy person trying to squeeze in some exercise time, interval training is perfect for you. All you need is 30 minutes instead of 1 hour. And the best part is, that 30 minutes of interval training is actually more effective than 1 hour of steady paced exercise. Just think about it, you are pushing your cardiovascular system during the 'sprint' periods. So even though your workout is shorter, you are burning lots of calories during that 'sprint' periods.

  3. Increases your after-burn. The after-burn is the calories burned during rest or sleep. If you compare interval training and steady paced workout, after-burn is more for the former. That means, with interval training, you will continue to burn lots of calories even after you've finished your workout.

  4. It is more fun. Seriously, it gets kinda boring just doing a steady jog or walk for 50 minutes or more. Adding the short sessions of speed in between makes exercise a little more fun. And if you go jogging with your dog, your dog will enjoy those bursts of speed too.

  5. Increases your endurance. Interval training is a great way to build up your endurance. Very quickly, you'll find that the hills are easier to climb and the long runs or rides are not impossible anymore.

Image Attribution:

Monday, November 12, 2012

5 Simple Workouts To Lose Belly Fat

One sure sign that your waistline is expanding is when you try to buckle up your pants but you can't unless you hold your breath and suck it in. Changing your wardrobe to rubber waisted pants is one way to cope with a big belly but the better way would be to lose it. An expanding waistline does not only impose a fashion hazard but is also bad for your health. It may lead you to health problems such as heart disease and diabetes.

[caption id="attachment_250" align="aligncenter" width="439"]Belly Fat Do you want to get rid of belly fat?[/caption]

To stop your waistline from expanding further, you must watch what you eat. But that is not all, dieting will only get you so far. You must also get your body moving with exercise. Now I know not everyone wants to join a gym. Many of you don't even have the time for that. But that is no excuse for skipping exercise. If you want that flat tummy, you've got to quit the excuses and just do it. Here are some ideas on what you can do at home.

  1. Jogging, fast past walking, dancing and cycling are examples of cardio exercises you can do. You want to get your heart rate up. A high intensity workout will get you burning lots of calories. So don't do something too easy. Try to exercise 4-5 times a week. Each session should last a minimum of 30 minutes.

  2. Don't neglect your core muscles. Making them stronger will help tighten your tummy. Some exercises to build your core include push-ups and the plank exercise. You'll be working several muscles at the same time.

  3. Work out your legs with lunges, squats and step-ups. Building the big muscles in your legs will help you burn more calories. After all, muscles are better at burning calories than fat; So you should aim to increase your muscle mass.

  4. Many people think crunches will help them lose belly fat. Unfortunately that is not the case. However, that does not mean you shouldn't do them. It helps to make your tummy more defined when you start to lose fat.

  5. Last of all, how's your stress level? It you are pretty stressed out, your body releases a hormone that keeps that weight on. So don't count out stress as a contributing factor to your weight gain. Do some yoga, meditation or any activity that will help you relax and clear your mind.

Image Attribution:

Thursday, September 27, 2012

What Are The Benefits Of Morning Workouts

Many years ago, I forced myself to wake up early to go to the park to exercise before sending my little girl to kindergarten. It was not an easy thing for me because I like to sleep in. I'm sure many of you are like me. If you're a night owl, it is hard to get out of bed early in the morning.

However, there are benefits to working out in the morning.

A study conducted at Brigham Young University found that a 45 minutes morning exercise helped reduce food cravings in women. We all know that if you want to lose weight, you've got to control your food cravings.

Exercising in the morning also means less chance of you skipping the exercise session later on. I'm sure you agree that as the day progresses, you just get busier and busier. There are many things to do and places to go. Getting your exercise done and over with early in the day prevents you from canceling your workout session or social engagements.

If you live in places where it gets hot and humid as the sun rises, morning workouts help you escape the heat. You can exercise when it is still nice and cool.

My friends who work out in the morning always tell me that they feel more energized the rest of the day. I guess that can be true because exercise gets your blood moving. So your muscles, organs and other tissues are getting a healthy dose of oxygen and nutrients. That is one way to jump start your body for the day. However, when I was just beginning to exercise, I did not feel that energy boosting feeling. On the contrary, I felt really tired after that. Therefore, if you are just starting out on your exercise program, give your body some time to adjust. Once your body is used to the exercise, you will feel that increase in energy.

Although there are benefits to working out in the morning, it is important that you choose an exercise time that fits your schedule. Sleep is important too. If you plan to exercise early in the morning, make sure you hit the bed early the night before. Whether you exercise in the morning or late evening, the important thing is that you do it regularly.

Monday, September 10, 2012

Excess Calories Is Not The Real Reason For Overweight Teenagers

We always think that our teenage kids are obese because they eat too much. However, a recent study does not vindicate our opinion.

"For older children and teenagers, increasing involvement in physical activity may be more important to weight and health than is their child’s diet," said study researcher Asheley Cockrell Skinner, University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill.

As parents, we need to educate our kids the importance of physcial activities. Not just any activity. But it should be one that can expend their calories.

Furthermore, we should teach them about healthy eating. Knowing when to stop eating is important too as this should prevent overeating.

Read more about teenage obesity here.

Thursday, August 23, 2012

How Is Your Body Similar To A Car

You want to lose weight, become leaner and improve your body's condition but do you know how to do it? If you understand how your body works, you can come up with a plan that will successfully get you to achieve your health goals.

[caption id="attachment_238" align="aligncenter" width="500"]Your Body Is Like A Car Your Body Is Like A Car | Photo Credit[/caption]

Todd Bassler, a certified personal trainer with Premier Fitness, compares our body to a car. Making this comparison should give you clearer picture on what your body needs to be in tip top condition.

First, he talks about fuel. The kind of fuel you put in your car determines how smooth it runs and the efficiency of the engine. Likewise, the food we eat is fuel for our body. Get the right kind of nutrition and your body will function efficiently. Your body can produce more energy if you eat the right combination of carbohydrates, protein and fat. You should know that a nutritional meal will give you more energy than junk food, even if the caloric count is the same.

Next, Todd compares a car's alignment to our joint stability and strength. Our skeleton will be pulled out of alignment if some muscles are tight while others are loose. This could lead to joint and back problems. To improve joint stability, strength training is essential. Stretching exercises to keep your muscles flexible is important too.

Last of all, revving up your car's motor is akin to your metabolism. The longer your rev up your car, the hotter the engine gets. Likewise, raising your metabolism will get you burning more calories. You can raise your metabolism by increasing your muscle mass. Muscle cells burn more calories than fat cells. So, gain more muscle through strength training or lifting weights.

Changing the way you eat will affect your metabolism too. Instead of the 3 standard meals per day, break your meals down to smaller portions but eat more often. Todd used the idea of building a campfire to help us understand this concept. A couple of sticks won't help to build a roaring fire. However, if you keep adding sticks to the fire every few hours, you'll have a nice bonfire for a long time. That's the reasoning to why eating smaller meals consistently can help you burn more calories.

How you exercise will also determine how fast you burn calories. The best is high intensity aerobic exercises as it ups your heart rate and that gets more calories burning. Todd recommends that you burn a minimum of 500 calories every hour of exercise.

Monday, August 13, 2012

Milk May Help In Weight Loss

Drinking milk may prevent obesity. Scientists found a natural ingredient in milk that have similar effects as resveratrol. Maybe it'll become the next metabolism-boosting supplement.
"The researchers identified this ingredient, known as nicotinamide riboside, as they were searching for alternative ways to boost the well-known gene SIRT1, which comes with benefits for both metabolism and longevity."

"Mice that took nicotinamide riboside in fairly high doses along with their high-fat meals burned more fat and were protected from obesity while keeping them fit and energetic. They also became better runners thanks to muscles that have greater endurance."

The question is that how much of nicotinamide riboside you need to see the effect?

Wednesday, June 27, 2012

5 Minutes Core Strengthening Workouts

If you want to develop a stronger core, then try this 5 minutes abs workout.

Monday, June 18, 2012

How Yogurt Can Help You To Lose Weight

Fitsugar today shares interesting points about yogurt. But I think you would like to know how yogurt can help you to lose weight.

Yogurt is rich with protein. This will help to keep you feeling satisfied. So, you eat less the next meal.

Protein also boosts your metabolism. If you are thinking of burning more calories, eat yogurt. Go for plain Greek yogurt as it contains twice as much protein as regular plain nonfat yogurt.

Thursday, June 14, 2012

Why Running Backwards Is Good For You

[caption id="attachment_212" align="aligncenter" width="500"]Reverse Running Reverse Running[/caption]

Have you tried to run backwards? Not only it helps to tone your abs and butts, it also improves your posture, minimizes stress on knees and enhances your balance and peripheral vision. Now comes the best part.

"Running backwards burns a third more calories than going forwards. This is because you use all your leg muscles, as well as your tummy, bottom and back muscles. Running one mile backwards is the equivalent of running six miles forwards," Sally Raynes, fitness expert and event director at Wacky Nation says.

This means if you are short of time to exercise and you want to burn more calories, you should try reverse running.

Photo credit

Wednesday, June 13, 2012

Are You Really Burning Maximum Fat

[caption id="attachment_202" align="aligncenter" width="500" caption="Are you struggling to torch stubborn fat?"]fat[/caption]

Have you been working out only to find that you can't get rid of some stubborn fat at places that are visible to everyone? What are you doing wrong?

According to fitness experts like Cedric Byrant, if you want to lose fat, you need to create a calorie deficit. This means that you have to use more calories than you consume. You also need to cut down your calorie intake as well. When you lose this fat, it is not because of the fat you burned during workout. Is this far fetched?

Well, I feel that it is correct to a certain extend but not entirely. I would agree with calorie deficit. However, when you burn calories, it doesn't mean that you burn fat. Apart from reducing your calorie consumption, you can still eliminate body fat through specific exercises.

When you work out, all you want is to lose fat. Losing fat is a complicated bodily process. So the first thing you should learn is your physiology.

How Does Your Body Get Its Fuel

Let's define what is calorie. Calorie is a unit to measure energy that our bodies need. Basically, you can obtain energy from fat, carbohydrates and proteins. Most of the time, your body will rely on fat and carbohydrates for fuel.

Your body needs to break down carbohydrates and fats through a series of metabolic processes into Adenosine-5'-triphosphate (ATP), the primary source of energy.

Glycolysis is a 10-step process that converts carbs into glucose, the simplest form. The production of glucose takes place in the liver, which releases glucose into the bloodstream. It will be stored in the muscles as glycogen.

The production of ATP for fat requires the disintegration of fat into free fatty acids. The fat has to be metabolized in the adipose tissues or fat cells before it can be delivered to the muscles through the bloodstream. In the muscles, it requires two more processes to become ATPs.

Although the process to convert fat into ATP is longer but it has more ATP than the breaking down of carbs. However, your body prefers carbohydrates as fuel because the ATP generation is faster.

Your body will use both fat and carb for fuel in any circumstances, even at rest. The ratio between fat and carb is usually even. However, it will change when you work out. This means that there will be a shift of balance between fat and carbohydrates, depending on the intensity of your workout.

Why Do We Have Body Fat

In the first place, where does the fat come from? When you eat, your body will use the calories from the food for energy. Regardless of its source, whatever calories that is not used will be converted into triglycerides, which will be stored in the fat cells. There is no limit for your body to store fat. That is why you see fat accumulated almost everywhere on your body.

Why Burning Calories Is Not Burning Fat

Burning calories does not always translate to burning fat. During the initial ATP generation, whatever calories that are used actually come from carbohydrates. So when do you actually burn fat?

When Do You Burn Stored Fat

There are two schools of thoughts when it comes to burning calories from triglycerides or stored fat.

Fat Burning Zone

[caption id="attachment_200" align="aligncenter" width="500" caption="Fat Burning Zone Chart"]Fat Burning Zone Chart[/caption]

The metabolism of triglycerides needs oxygen. When you perform aerobic exercises, your body will only burn glucose in the initial stage. Once you hit a certain heart rate (target heart rate), your body will receive enough oxygen to use stored fat for energy. As long as you maintain your target heart rate, you will continue to use calories from the fat. This is popularly known as fat burning zone. You can't miss seeing these charts of fat burning zone that are pasted on the walls in the gyms or on the display panels of some fitness equipment.

There are two situations where your body will not receive enough oxygen for fat burning. It is either your workout is not intensive enough or too strenuous. So, this leads to a belief that low intensity, long duration exercise is excellent for fat burning.

So how do you calculate your target heart rate? The easiest way is to use an online target heart rate calculator.

You can buy a heart rate monitor and check the reading when you exercise.

The least expensive method is take your own pulse rate. Do this the first thing you get up in the morning. Grab your pulse for 60 seconds. When you have your pulse rate, add a zero for your target heart rate.

If you want a mathematical formula, try Karvonen Formula.

206.9 - (0.67 x age) = Maximum Heart Rate (MHR)*
MHR - Resting Heart Rate (RHR) = X
X * 65% (low end of heart rate zone) OR 85% (high end of heart rate zone) = Y OR Z
Y + RHR = A
Z + RHR = B
Your target heart rate zone should be between A and B.

Tanaka H, Monahan KD, Seals DR. Age-predicted maximal heart rate revisited. J Am Coll Cardiol. 2001

*Maximum heart rate (MHR) is the highest number of heart beat per minute.
Jackson, Andrew S. Estimating Maximum Heart Rate From Age: Is It a Linear Relationship? Med Sci Sports Exerc. 39(5):821, May 2007.

Calorie Deficit

”The amount of fat you’re going to lose is totally dependent on expending more calories than you take in” Dr. Karen Reznik Dolins, a professor of nutrition and physical education at Columbia University said.

The easiest way to create a calorie deficit is to consume less calories.

When there is a deficit, your body will be forced to use stored fat as fuel. Fuel is essential to keeping your bodily functions going. It does not matter where your body gets its calories (from food or stored fat). It will burn fat when you create a calorie deficit.

However, if you feed your body with extra calories (a calorie surplus), you are not going to get rid of your body fat. You may think that your body will be running short of carb calories during workout and will access your fat storage. But even if it does, the fat burning is not enough for you to lose body fat.

With the surplus of calories, clearly any unused calories will be turned into triglycerides, making their way to the fat cells. In other words, you are burning calories but you are also storing fat.

Another way to encourage a calorie deficit is to burn more calories than your caloric intake. Obviously, burning more calories requires more activities in your body. So doesn't this include working out?

Then why do fitness experts think that the fat that you burn is not because of your workout. I believe they are referring to those exercises that fall within the mythical fat burning zone particularly the low intensity ones.

Why Low Intensity Workout Doesn't Burn Fat Effectively

[caption id="attachment_203" align="aligncenter" width="500" caption="Jogging"]Jogging[/caption]

The concept of burning fat by working out within the target heart rate has led to a false doctrine: Low intensity workouts that use 60 and 70 percent of your maximum heart rate burn the most fat. This is a myth that has been going around for quite some time.

Here is a detailed explanation on why people might draw such a conclusion.

According to Dr Jason Kapp, low-intensity exercises use a higher portion of calories from fat. But don't take it wrongly. It doesn't mean you are burning more fat. Fat and carbs are energy calories. In the caloric combination of carb and fat, your body uses more fat than carb in this context.

Lactate threshold is the build up of lactic acid in your blood when you reach a specific intensity of the workout. It is where the changes from aerobic to anaerobic occurs. When you make your workout challenging enough to reach lactate threshold, the ratio of fat and carb in caloric burning takes a new shift.  The usage of carbs from the ratio will be higher while the fat expenditure from the ratio will be lower. Why? When your body needs more energy at high intensity, it will switch to glycogenolysis and glycolysis for ATP or energy generation. Simply because glucose is quicker to be converted into fuel than fat. This also means that your muscles will receive less free fatty acids.

Carb calories or glycogen are used often when you work out just below the lactate threshold. However, carbohydrates will be the only source of energy when you go beyond the lactate threshold. For this reason, high intensity workouts use mostly carb calories.

When you perform endurance training which requires longer duration, the level of glycogen (carb calories in the muscles) and blood sugar drops. Although muscles prefer carb calories for energy, but the metabolism will have no choice but to turn stored fat or triglycerides for ATP as the shortage of carbs is imminent.

Based on these facts, it is natural for people to think that they can burn a lot of fat with low intensity training. But the truth is you burn more fat with high intensity workout.

Just below lactate threshold, carbs are mostly used. That is to say the percentage of fat used is low. However, the total calories burned and the caloric expenditure rate (the number of calories burned per minute) at that level surpass those that are found in lower intensity exercises. This also shows that the total amount of fat burned is significant. There is a major difference between the percentage of fat burned and total amount of fat burned. What you want to see is the final result: the overall amount of fat that you have lost. The takeaway is that your caloric expenditure rate will increase further if you work out above the lactate threshold.

Another reason why high intensity training burn more fat overall is that there is a limit to how much your body can store glycogen. When the storage of glycogen depletes and your body needs more calories to fuel your intensified workouts, your body will be forced to tap into the stored fats or triglycerides for immediate fuel.

Studies show low intensity exercises burn a higher percentage of fat from the calories than high intensity ones. Remember I mentioned earlier that calories burned is made up of a ratio of fat and carbohydrates? Yeah! Look great right? But, when it comes to the total fat burned, high intensity workouts fare better. Here is a comparison chart between low and high intensity workouts in terms of fat loss. Pay attention to total calories and fat calories expended.

Fat Burning - High Intensity vs Low Intensity TrainingAccording to the American Council of Exercise, although 60 percent from the calories burned during low intensity exercise comes from fat as compared to 35 percent from high intensity training, the end result of burning the most fat calories is in favor of high intensity workouts. So, why do you want to work out longer hours at low intensity when you can't maximize your fat burning capabilities?

I rest my case.

Let us look into fat burning zone again. Let me define what this is. Fat burning zone is how well your metabolism in using stored fats as energy. By now, you are familiar with the myth of low intensity exercises as fat burners. But there is more. If you are relying on target heart rate to shed excess fat, you must go above it. A better benchmark would be your maximum heart rate. Your target heart rate is not enough to intensify your workout. You should aim for 70-90% of your maximum heart rate and spend at least 30 minutes.

However, heart rate is not accurate in determining the intensity of the workout. When your heart rate escalates, it does not necessary equate to an increase in caloric expenditure. Sometimes, medicines, stress, anxiety, nicotine or caffeine can cause your heart to beat faster.

Another more effective fat burning zone is afterburn. The amount of calories used during workout is nothing compared to the total sum burned in 24-hours. Your metabolism must be high enough and sustained for 24 hours or more, achieving greater fat loss. This takes place when you are not working out.

Dr. Len Lopez, a nutrition and fitness expert and author of “To Burn or Not to Burn – Fat is the Question” and the creator of the “Work Horse Fitness Trainer” believes that what matters the most is that your metabolism must burn stored fat for the critical part of the day which is the 23 hours. Simply because most people just burn carbs and lean muscle throughout the day. Since everyone has a lot of fat in their bodies, “your metabolism burn fats more readily than carbohydrates and proteins (lean muscle)” he said. If you don't provide sufficient carbs to your body, then it will have to draw its energy from stored fats for the remaining of the day.

How To Maximize Fat Burning

I believe by now you can appreciate the fact that if you want to burn more fat, you need to focus on creating a calorie deficit and higher caloric expenditure.

Dr. Reznik Dolins remarked that you need to work out as hard as possible to create a calorie deficit. If you lower the intensity of your workout, your overall calorie burning will also decline.

For your caloric expenditure to be high enough to burn fat, you need to focus on the higher end of your MHR which is 70-90%. This means you need high intensity workouts.

As mentioned earlier, heart rate is not accurate in determining the intensity of your workout. A better assessment would be oxygen consumption (VO2). It is more accurate than heart rate as it measures the caloric expenditure during exercise. Calculating caloric expenditure using VO2 is based on an individual's metabolic demands of exercise. When the workout becomes harder and more challenging which is about 70% or more of VO2 max, you will use more oxygen. Remember I mention that the presence of oxygen is essential in fat loss. So in this case, you will burn more calories and fat.

If you want more bang for your workout by maximizing your fat burning, try High Intensity Interval Training (HIIT) and strength training. Both workouts focus on stressing your muscles to create metabolic effects. This is important because you want to burn more fat for hours after completing your routines.

During the recovery, your muscles need to be repaired and replace the energy that has been used when working out. Thus, your muscles require more metabolic processes to recover than cardiovascular exercises.

This explains why the total amount of fat expenditure for the next 23 hours is far greater than the total amount of fat burned during workout.

High Intensity Interval Training (HIIT)

HIIT is a series of short burst, high intensity workout with intervals of rest for recovery. It can rev up your metabolism high enough to burn both calories and fat. This is one exercise that can help you to create a calorie deficit.

The key to maximum fat loss during interval training is to work as hard as you can for each interval. Because each interval is short and the whole session takes only 20-30 minutes, you have to put in as much effort as possible. You will burn a lot of calories in a short duration during the workout. Your metabolism will remain high after the workout. This sustained metabolism will promote more caloric expenditure for hours after your physical routine.

Because you only spend a short time in HIIT, it is ideal for anyone who don't have the luxury of time to exercise.

Strength Training

Strength training is an effective workout that can increase muscle mass and strength. You can either lift weights or use weight machines which is known as weight training or use your body weight to work against your muscles, commonly known as resistance training.

Strength training not only boosts your metabolism of fat for ATP but after exercise, your body will still burn calories. If you want maximum fat burning, the weights should be heavy enough to stress your muscles metabolically.

Whether high intensity workouts are right for you or not, you have to evaluate your fitness level first. If you are ready for high intensity workouts, check out this challenging training program that will turn your body into a fat-incinerating furnace.

Saturday, June 9, 2012

2 Tiny Changes Not To Screw Up Your Fitness After 40

[caption id="attachment_189" align="aligncenter" width="500" caption="Jennifer Lopez 'V' Cover Spring Issue 2012"]Jennifer Lopez 'V' Cover Spring Issue 2012[/caption]

Is it too late to regain your fitness in your forties? Well, look at Jennifer Lopez. She appeared in the cover of V magazine recently. She is 42. But look at her toned body.

It seems that many celebrities in their 40s look fit and sharp. Is it because of their genes? Do you think it is possible for you to have an amazing body like them?

Why People Fail To Stay Fit After 40?

Why many of us are so unfit, or worse still, we tend to put on extra pounds when we hit 40? You can blame it on the aging process.

As women reach mid-years, perimenopause is inevitable. At this stage, your estrogen level is low. This means whatever excess fat you have will end up in the belly. Or an appropriate term would be middle-age spread. This is not something that you can take lightly. Your heart is located not very far from your mid-section. As your belly accumulates more fat, your chances of getting stroke or heart attack is very high.

However, aging is not the only factor that changes our appearance. It is the little time you spend on exercise.

You have your peak probably between mid 20s and 30. However, it starts to slow down as you move into the mid-years. At this point, you gain weight faster than you can imagine.

Can you remember that you were more active when you were young? You burned a lot of calories each time you were involved in any physical activities. This is due to the lean muscle mass that you had.

Muscles burn calories better than fat. They are active tissues. For each pound of muscle, it can burn about 50 calories a day. Compared that to fat which only burns 4 calories a day for the same weight.

[caption id="attachment_190" align="aligncenter" width="500" caption="Muscle vs Fat"]Muscle Burn Calories Better Than Fat[/caption]

So, why does your efficiency of fat burning decline when you reach your forties? It is because of the lack of physical activities. When you don't move very often, you start to lose muscle mass, which is known as atrophy. After 30, you will lose 1/2 to 1 lbs of muscle every year due to inactivity. Once you hit 40, you have lost between 5 and 10 lbs of muscle. This means, your metabolism will lose the effectiveness to burn between 250 and 500 calories per day. By the time you reach your 65th birthday, you have lost up to 40% of muscle mass and aerobic fitness.

Besides inactivity, you hardly change the way you eat. You may consume the same calorie amount as when you were young or even more. Since your metabolism slows down, the excess calories is converted into fat and stored in your belly.

It is clear that your inactivity and your unchanged calorie consumption will just reduce your lean muscle mass and increase your fat tissues. Certainly, this will  affect your metabolism. Furthermore, all those fats will be making their way to your belly. Over time, you will put on weight.

The Secrets Of Staying Fit Over 40

So, what are the secrets to being fit again? Well, there are no secrets at all. If you have been active during your younger days, you should be doing the same at 40.

You just have to take control of your life again. Obviously, the other half of the equation which is responsible for your low fitness is inactivity. Just by making a new commitment to move more often, fitness over 40 is possible. Getting into activity will reverse the effects of atrophy and ramp up your cardio fitness.

First of all, you have to ask yourself “What is your motivation?”. At this age, what  you really want is to stay fit. Being fit allows you to do your regular tasks every day without any hitch. You can be physically self-reliant because you don't have to rely on other people. However, if your motivation is more than staying fit, by all means go ahead and have a hot body like Jennifer Lopez or Hugh Jackman.

Next, your mindset. If you are not in good shape, ask yourself what have you been putting your body through in the past. Once you understand that your poor lifestyle is the culprit, then you have to accept this new challenge to change, which is to adopt a healthy lifestyle. Willingness is the key here. Otherwise, you will return to your bad habits in no time.

There are two simple things you can tweak in your lifestyle: workout and eat less.

I understand when I talk about workout, some of you may take an extreme perspective. My advice is don't. As Colin Milner, CEO of the International Council on Active Aging (ICAA) based in Vancouver, British Columbia said ”Not moving is the worst thing you can do.

[caption id="attachment_191" align="aligncenter" width="500" caption="Are You Sitting Down All Day Long?"]Sitting Down All Day Long[/caption]

Challenges To Exercise

No doubt, there are challenges that you face when you are thinking about working out. During your mid-years, you are preoccupied with your career and family responsibilities that leave you very little time to exercise. As you grow older, you think you have more time. But your energy level is not what it used to be. Furthermore, your connective tissues like your tendon, ligaments, and cartilage weaken as you age. To make things worse, you spend a lot of time sitting down because you don't do the things you used to do during your youth.

One thing about celebrities is that they do press for time. They want the best results in the shortest possible time. I don't think J Lo is endowed with perfect genes. But her results are because of her consistency in working out. She has the time to exercise in the gym regularly. But most of you don't have the luxury of time.

It doesn't mean you can use this excuse not to exercise. You just have to make time to participate in a regular fitness program especially if you have a sedentary lifestyle. And you don't have to hit the gym for hours. Can you commit to exercise 30 minutes a day, at least 3 times a week? Just this tiny change in your lifestyle can set your biological age back more than 10 years, a study published in the British Journal of Sports Medicine says.

Am I Too Late To Start Working Out

If you can make time for exercise, you probably feel that it is too late to start. Not true! It doesn't matter how old you are. You start getting fit the moment you start moving.
After adopting a regular fitness routine, people of age 55 to 75 who used to be sedentary became fit again, enjoyed higher level of good cholesterol, experienced lesser risk of cardiovascular disease, and fell sick less frequently, a study published in the March 2005 issue of Diabetes Care reveals.

People who started late in working out showed longer lifespan and reduced risks of heart disease, a study, published in 1999 in the American Heart Journal finds.

Circuit Training

The best workout for over 40 is circuit training, also known as cross training. It is a combination of aerobic and strength workouts. It gives you the best results in the least amount of time because you are performing different routines in one session.

If you stick to the same routine all the time, not only will you get bored, but your body will be able to guess what you are doing. And soon you will hit a plateau, losing lean muscle mass and gaining fat.

Preventing injuries is critical when you start working out late. Repeating the same exercise will cause overuse of muscles, increasing the incidence of injuries. That is why you should treat cross training as the best idea in the world.

The whole idea of circuit-training is to challenge your whole body with various physical drills, achieving overall fitness. Also, it is important to do warming up and stretching exercises too.

Warming Up

Before you begin any physical activities, always warm up. It should be part of your fitness program especially if you are over 40. You can easily hurt yourself during workout if you skip the warm up.

When you warm up, your muscles will receive more blood. More blood means more oxygen, preparing you for the intensive workout. Furthermore, you will have more range of motion and flexibility as you step into either strength training or aerobic routines.

Strength Training

Strength training particularly weight training is more important than aerobic workout for those in the forties. One of the effects of aging is osteoporosis.

The benefits of lifting weights are

  • keeping your bone strong to delay osteoporosis.

  • increasing your bone density to minimize stress on your skeletal system.

  • strengthening muscles around the major joints to improve joint elasticity.

  • maintaining and increasing lean muscle mass to crank up your metabolism.

[caption id="attachment_193" align="aligncenter" width="500" caption="Weight Training"]Weight Training[/caption]

In fact, when it comes to muscle mass growth, strength training does better than aerobic workout. Even if you are actively doing aerobic exercise, it cannot prevent muscle loss. According to William J. Evans, PhD, director of the nutrition, metabolism, and exercise laboratory at the University of Arkansas for Medical Sciences' Donald W. Reynolds Institute on Aging, strength training is the only way to build and maintain muscles.

Even at rest, your body is still burning calories after you have stopped doing strengthening exercises. Doing it right will enable your revved up metabolism to last up to 48 hours.

For best results, most fitness experts suggest that you spend between 20 and 30 minutes in weight lifting for each session. You need to perform 2 or 3 reps per set. Repeat it 2 to 3 times a week.

The best result from muscle growth is when you lower the weights. So, make sure the time to lift up the weights is shorter than the time to lower them.

When you start your weight training, begin your first set with light weights for warming up. Then make it more challenging for the last few sets using heavier weights.

Aerobic Workout

When you perform aerobic exercises, you will burn calories. Unlike strength training, after your workout, you will stop burning calories within 2 hours.

So why do you need aerobic workout? Apart from improving your cardiovascular fitness, it can manage your stress and help you sleep better. Do you know that stress and lack of sleep encourage fat storage in your belly?

Aim to boost your heart rate for at least 30 minutes. Do this 3 to 4 times per week.

If you are walking or jogging, carry some light weights. This will strengthen your bones.
If you want to pump your heart rate even more, then try out interval training. It is a series of high intensity training followed by a short rest in between the workout.

Stretching Exercises

People tend to believe that stretching and warming up is the same. However, the opposite is true. Usually after you have completed your workout, you do stretching. It loosens your muscles which have become tight over the years. In addition, it helps to improve flexibility which you may not have during your mid-years.

[caption id="attachment_192" align="aligncenter" width="500" caption="Stretch After Working Out"]Stretching[/caption]

Workout Tips For Getting Fit After 40

  • Evaluate your current fitness level. Before you begin any exercise, you must know how fit you are. You can request the service of a qualified fitness instructor to examine your endurance, strength, cardiovascular fitness, body composition (muscle to fat ratio) and flexibility.

  • Consistency of your workout is going to make a big difference. Once you have decided to change your lifestyle, you have to stick closely to your fitness routine. Otherwise, you will not see much results.

  • As your age is catching up, you may not be able to do certain exercises especially high impact ones which previously were easy for you. The pain they inflict on your joints can sometimes be unbearable.   Listen to your body when you are exercising. When your body tells you that it is time to change your routine that causes discomfort, do it. Choose low impact workouts instead like cycling, swimming, or walking.

  • Choose a physical activity that you really enjoy. Your fitness regimen is going to be a long term quest. Don't do a particular exercise just because somebody tells you that it is ideal for your age. If you don't enjoy it, pretty soon you will give up.

  • Beyond 40, you need more time to recover after your workout. Have enough rest so your body can perform better the next time.

  • Have you heard about Non-Exercise Activity Thermogenesis (N.E.A.T.)? It is about making small movements every day, using energy for activities that do not involve exercise. For example, skip the elevator and use the stairs. Or take a walk to a nearby store instead of driving. If you adopt this new behavior, you may burn up to 1000 calories a day. Set a goal to walk 10,000 steps a day. Get a small pedometer like Gruve to record the number of steps you take.

[caption id="attachment_194" align="aligncenter" width="300" caption="Gruve Personal Activity Monitor"]Gruve Personal Activity Monitor[/caption]

Eat Less

At 40, you don't need the same amount calories as when you were in your 20s. Furthermore, you burn 100 calories lesser a day than you were in your 20s or 30s. So, you need to eat less.

Portion Control

Forget about restrictive diets. They only work temporarily. Opt for portion control, which can reduce the amount of unnecessary calories. If you find it difficult to control how much you eat, then Cedric Bryant, Ph.D., FACSM, Chief Science Officer for The American Council on Exercise suggests that you use a plate that should not exceed 9 inches in diameter.

Low Energy-Dense Foods

A study from Pennsylvania State University shows that not only the women who ate low-fat, water-rich foods lost one-quarter more weight than other subjects who just fed on a conventional low-fat diet, they felt full. So, choose low energy-dense foods as they usually have high water content, keeping you satisfied for hours. Even if you overeat, you don't have to worry as they are low in calories.

High Fiber Packed Foods

High fiber rich foods such as lentils, brown rice, and buckwheat are a must-have on your daily menu. This will increase satiety, reducing food craving. It also eliminate fats from your body.

Complex Carbohydrates

Leave out simple carbs that are found in processed foods. They are bad as they spike up your blood sugar level, causing you to feel hungry in a short time. Go for complex carbohydrates like oats, beans, and potatoes as they are usually loaded with resistance starch. Resistant starch will increase your metabolic activity, burning extra calories. Also, it stimulates the production of leptin, a hormone that suppresses your appetite.

Clearly by now, you can see that inactivity is the one that prevents you the most from staying fit in your forties. If you want to improve your fitness, check out our sponsor below.

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Wednesday, June 6, 2012

How To Get Stacy Keibler's Body In 18 Minutes

Can you imagine having an amazing bikini body like Stacy Keibler?

Well, the secrets are out. You don't need to exercise for long hours. Just 18 minutes each time. Do this four to five times a week and soon you will have a hot body like Stacy.

Thanks to Juliet Kaska, a celebrity trainer who designs this fast-paced resistance training. It focuses on shoulders, triceps, abs, butt and legs. All you need is a resistance band.

Each "sexy sizzler" lasts about 6 minutes. So, for each session, you need to complete 3 sexy sizzlers without any rest in between. This blistering pace routine will definitely rev up your heart rate, putting your body into a calorie-blasting overdrive. Even after you have stopped working out, your body will continue to burn calories for up to 48 hours. The concept is similar to Tabata. The only difference is that you have a short rest in between for Tabata.

Check out a total of 9 sexy sizzlers here which you can try at home.

Why You Should Eat Before Workout To Burn Fat

[caption id="attachment_183" align="aligncenter" width="500" caption="Eat Before Workout?"]Skipping Meals Before Workout[/caption]

You could burn fat if you don't eat before workout, a 2008 study by the University of Leuven in Belgium reveals. How is it possible?

If you don't feed your body with energy foods like carbohydrates before exercising, your body will have to turn to fat for fuel.

Peter Hespel, a researcher of the study explained that the absence of food before workout causes your body to have a higher level of adrenalin and a lower level of insulin. This condition allows the muscles to burn more fatty acids. In other words, if you skip your pre-workout meal, you can burn more fat than those who have a snack before performing any physical training.

Mind you that this study involved professional athletes. They are not the average American Joes.

How does this apply to ordinary people who just want to get rid of fat?

In this study, the fat loss occurs mostly in the muscles due to the lack of energy that is needed for the workout. This means you are not burning fat in other parts of the body. Without food, you need to perform many reps of very intensive workouts to burn other fats in your body. But, how much and how long can you exercise without food?

You need high intensity workouts to boost your heart rate. This will burn more calories and fat which eventually will lead to weight loss. If you try to perform this kind of workout on an empty stomach, how would you fare?

If you follow a fitness regimen, you need energy for your muscles to perform. That is why competitive cyclists like Lance Armstrong usually grab a quick bite that is rich with carbohydrates before the competition starts.

The journal of the American College of Sports Medicine reported that although the subjects who missed meals before intensive workout burned more fat than those who ate, but their performance dropped.

[caption id="attachment_184" align="aligncenter" width="500" caption="Are You Worn Out?"]Exhausted[/caption]

Ron Maughan, a professor of sport, exercise and health sciences at Loughborough University in Britain understands this fact well. If you don't feed your body with enough fuel, you can't keep up with the intensity of the workout to improve.

I strongly believe that skipping meals before workout not only affects your fat burning effort but your physical health as well.

Thinking of exercising in the morning? Your blood sugar level should be low. Why? By morning, you have used whatever energy you have from your dinner. So, leaving out breakfast will lower your blood sugar level even more. You may end up with hypoglycemia.

If you have exercised before on an empty stomach, don't you wonder why you feel sluggish or dizzy. Probably you give up half way during your workout, not being able to complete the numbers of reps that you have set. Simply because you don't have enough energy to go on.

Furthermore, you may hurt yourself when you exercise. Your mental focus is affected when you are hungry. You may even take a longer time to recover from each routine.

This brings up another point. What do you think is going to happen after working out? There is a tendency to eat more. This is true when your blood sugar is low.

You fail to perform to the level that you desire. I'm referring to optimal fat burning. In any workout, you want to maximize your performance. But without food prior to your training, you are less likely to optimize your performance.

Why optimum performance is crucial in fat burning? The researchers at the University of Georgia discovered that athletes with the best performance were those who had regular meals and meals before and after intensive workouts. They had more muscle mass and higher energy levels. No wonder they were leaner from those who eat irregularly throughout the day.

In fact, most studies involve athletes. I understand that you are not an athlete.  But I have shown you both sides of the coin as far as food prior to exercise is concerned.

What I want to emphasize is that food is important before workout particularly carbohydrates. You want to burn overall body fat and not just fat in the muscles. If you don't have enough fuel to exercise optimally, how are you going to shed excess body fat?

Are you looking for great home workouts to burn more fat? Check out our sponsor's program.

Monday, June 4, 2012

Here Are 4 Secret Weapons That Women Over 40 Can Use To Fight Belly Fat

When women reach their 40s, they find it hard to get rid of belly fat regardless of what they do. Why? Probably it is because of their hormones particularly estrogen which is notorious for fat storage.

[caption id="attachment_175" align="aligncenter" width="500" caption="Do you want a flat tummy?"]Flat Stomach[/caption]

When your body is high with estrogen, it hoards fat especially in the hips, chest, and thighs. However, when your menopause sets in, your body produces less estrogen and more androgen, a male hormone. The hormonal imbalance shifts the fat storage to the belly.

You lose muscle mass during the aging process. Lesser muscle mass means you will burn fat less effectively.

So what can you do to reduce belly fat at 40s? Basically there are 4 things that you can do: workout, proper diet, sleep and stress management.

Total Body Workout

If you are thinking of spot reduction exercise, it is not going to help at all. You need to burn overall body fat. Cardiovascular workout and strength training are what you need. As long as you can boost your heart rate and exercise your whole body, you will get rid of belly fat.

Check out the video below on some of the best fat burning workouts that you can do at home.

If you want more information on these killer fat blasting exercises, click here.

Healthy Eating

Proper diet is important. You have to stop eating foods that will add to your belly fat especially foods that require little digestion. So avoid fast foods and processed foods. If you want a smaller waistline, opt for fruits, vegetables, and lean meat. Control your portion too.


Have enough sleep. You need a minimum of 7 hours of sleep. Perimenopause and menopause can interfere with your sleep patterns. If you don't sleep enough, the level of ghrelin will increase, causing you to eat more. At the same time, the level of leptin will decrease. Leptin is important in overcoming food craving. Thus, lack of sleep will cause more fat storage in the abdominal area.

Stress Management

Manage your stress. Stress can increase the amount of cortisol in the body. This will promote fat storage in the middle section.

If you're struggling to lose stubborn body fat, become a furnace of fat loss by trying this best selling fat burner. Or you can check out Female Fat Loss Over 40 Program here.

Wednesday, May 23, 2012

Skip Midnight Snack If You Want To Lose Weight

[caption id="attachment_169" align="aligncenter" width="500" caption="Heading to the fridge for a midnight snack?"]Snack[/caption]

My friend told me that if I want to lose weight, I should not eat anything after 10pm. Maybe I should listen to her. A study recently published in the Journal of Cell Metabolism suggests that eating at the wrong hours of the day contributes to weight gain. Therefore, it's not just about too much calories.

So, why is it important to quit those midnight snacks? According to lead author Satchidananda Panda of the Salk Institute for Biological Studies, eating at the wrong hours of the night will mess up our normal metabolic cycles. We need to let our muscles and internal organs like the liver and intestine take a rest. A clash in our eating schedule and body clock leads to weight gain.

Do not take this study to mean that you can eat as much calories as you want during the day as long as you fast at the right time for the right number of hours at night. It is still important to have a balanced diet and exercise too.

All these years, when it comes to weight loss, the focus has been on calorie counting. This research tells us that there is another factor for us to consider. If you like to stay up late and have a habit of raiding the fridge for a midnight snack, maybe it's time to put a stop to it. This could be the key to solving your weight problem.

Tuesday, May 22, 2012

How To Lose Weight During Pregnancy

Overweight Pregnant WomanIf you are pregnant, you are definitely going to gain weight. The question is how much weight are you going to gain? If you are already overweight to begin with, you need to take extra precautions. A pregnant woman that is obese has a higher risk of delivering through C-section, hemorrhage, extended hospital stay and need for neonatal intensive care.

In the British Medical Journal, researchers found dietary intervention the most effective way in reducing gestational weight gain. You don't have to worry about your baby suffering from your diet change if your diet plan is nutritionally balanced.

A balanced diet comprises of unprocessed whole grains, fruits, beans and vegetables. Each person's energy intake is different but a good guide is maximum 30% fat, 15-20% protein and 50-55% carbohydrate.

Diet alone is not enough to beat obesity. Moderate workout such as brisk walking can help overweight pregnant women to shed some pounds.

If you want to lose weight safely during pregnancy, learn more about this Weight Loss Program for Pregnant Women.

Contact Sports May Affect Learning Ability

American FootballYou would think that someone who gets his head banged in too many times can't be too smart. Isn't this a common believe? Experiencing numerous head impacts in contact sports such as football and hockey can't be good for the brain right? Well, a research has been published in the medical journal of the American Academy of Neurology addressing this issue.

What the Dartmouth researchers found was that in general, athletes in contact sports did not differ much cognitively from athletes in non-contact sports. However, when it came to measuring how well they did with new learning, those that had higher exposure to various head impact metrics performed poorly.

So, maybe we were not entirely wrong after all. This is in indication that some athletes are negatively effected by repeated head impacts. However, some are effected more than others. McAllister, the study author, reasons that "some people may be genetically more sensitive to head impacts". Also, it raises the question on whether the effects are short term or long lasting. Nothing is conclusive yet. Definitely more research needs to be done.

Saturday, May 19, 2012

Too Much Sugar Can Mess Your Brain

[caption id="attachment_157" align="aligncenter" width="500" caption="Sugar"]Sugar[/caption]

Sugar can make you more stupid. Wow, I'm sure most of us didn't know that. What we know is that too much sugar is not healthy for us as it can lead to diabetes and obesity. But how many of us really wondered what it was doing to our brain? Well, a research team at UCLA took a look and for the first time, made a link between sugar and brain function.

So, what does it do? It hampers your memory and learning. Therefore, you must be more careful in what you eat. If you have children, watch what you feed them. If you are still studying, consider what you snack on when you hit the books.

The type of sugar used in the research was high-fructose corn syrup. This sugar is commonly used as a sweetener and preservative when manufacturing food products. So, stay away from processed foods, soft drinks, condiments, applesauce and even baby food.

The good news is that omega-3 fatty acids can counteract the problem. Foods rich in omega-3 fatty acids are salmon, walnuts and flaxseeds. You can also take DHA in capsule form. Gomez-Pinilla, a professor of neurosurgery recommends one gram of DHA per day. He also advises us to cut down the sugary desserts. Replace them with fresh berries and Greek yogurt instead. Dark chocolate minus the extra sweetener is given the thumbs up too. If you can't stay off the sugar, the least you can do is counter with omega-3 fatty acids.

So, don't just think too much sugar will make you sick, it'll harm your brain too.

Friday, May 18, 2012

Curb Your Food Cravings With Gila Monster Saliva

[caption id="attachment_153" align="aligncenter" width="500" caption="Gila Monster"]Gila Monster[/caption]

How far would you go to control your food cravings? Would you take a drug made from the saliva of the Gila monster lizard? Your response to that would probably be "YECH". However, researchers at the Sahlgrenska Academy, University of Gothenburg, says that it works. They tested it on rats and found that it stopped their cravings for ordinary food and chocolate. The name of the drug is Exenatide and is a synthetic version of a natural substance known as exendin-4.

Who can benefit from this drug? Those who are diabetic, obese or suffering from eating disorders such as compulsive overeating. If you want to lose weight and have failed in your dieting attempts, this may help you too. Professor of Physiology at the Sahlgrenska Academy, Suzanne Dickson said that most diets fail because we can't overcome our desire for tempting foods. In this case, overcoming our cravings is the answer to controlling our weight. They will continue to study this drug to see if it also will suppress alcohol cravings.

So, if you can't stay away from chocolate, ice cream, cakes and other foods that keep your weight up, maybe a lizard's saliva is the answer to your problem.


Weight Loss Improves Fertility

A study at the 19th European Congress on Obesity in Lyon, France implies that weight loss improves chances of getting pregnant. The research was presented by Kyra Sim from the University of Sydney's Boden Institute of Obesity, Nutrition, Exercise and Eating Disorders. The study involved 49 overweight women who were undergoing fertility treatments. One group women followed a 12-week low calorie diet program while the other group acted as a control. The former group which lost a mean of 6.6 kg registered 48% rate of pregnancy while 14% was reported in the latter group.

Wednesday, May 16, 2012

Overweight Pregnant Women Are Likely To End Up With Overweight Children

Overweight Pregnant WomanIf you are pregnant, do yourself and your baby a favor and watch your weight. A research that was published in the journal Circulation indicates that mothers that are overweight when pregnant will lead to their children becoming overweight not only as children but also as adults. As you may know, being overweight can cause many unwanted health problems and illnesses such as diabetes and heart problems.

Study co-author Professor Orly Manor believes it is important to know the reasons why people end up fat so we can take action early to fight off the health problems that follow it.

At the moment, there is a trial treatment being done by British doctors in 4 cities to stop overweight mothers-to-be from giving birth to obese babies. These pregnant mothers are given the diabetes drug metformin. This is their idea of medicating babies while still in the womb.

This does not sit well with everybody. Maybe we should not be too quick to choose medications to solve our problems. They are not always the safest choice. Encouraging mothers-to-be to live a healthier lifestyle, get fit and eat more nutritiously should be emphasized. If mothers can break their family away from unhealthy habits that contribute to obesity, and instill healthy habits in their children, I have no doubt this will give their children a better chance of staying away from obesity.

If you are expecting a baby and would like to lose weight safely, check out this Weight Loss Program for Pregnant Women.

Social Humiliation To Help You Lose Weight

[caption id="attachment_141" align="aligncenter" width="500" caption="Feeling humiliated?"]Humiliation[/caption]

It seems there is an app for everything these days, so why not an app to help you stick to your weight loss plan. Here are some of the more popular ones: Virtual Fridge Lock, GymPact and Aherk.

Virtual Fridge Lock uses social humiliation. When you raid your fridge at night, a magnetic device you attach to the fridge will alert your friends in your social network. Now you can't sneakily grab a midnight snack without others knowing about it. Maybe the unkind comments you get will whip you into shape. Gympact uses money as a motivator. Get paid when you meet your fitness goals and pay a penalty when you fail. Aherk is a Facebook app. Fall short of your health goal and expect embarrassing pictures hitting your social network.

So, which do you think will do a better job in motivating you to stick to your weight loss program?

Get the full story on Weight-Loss Plan In The Form Of Social Humiliation.

Man Drops 100 Pounds With Modified Yoga Program

YogaDiamond Dallas Page (DPP), the latest high-intensity form of yoga has helped an obese Arthur Boorman lose 100 pounds. Although yoga has been known to improve strength and flexibility, the founder of this new workout focuses on the slow, deep resistance motion of the yoga. He believes that using body for resistance training in yoga can help people to lose weight.

Weight Loss Surgery Performed Through the Mouth

Overweight PeoplePOSE (Primary Obesity Surgery Endoluminol) is a new weight loss surgery that created a buzz at New Orleans. It aims to reduce between 20 and 50 pounds of excess weight. However, there is a failure rate between 15 and 20 percent.

The whole incisionless procedure requires no hospital stay. With only a few surgeons who offer this unique service, it is performed through the mouth.

The objective of the surgery is to make your stomach smaller. This is possible by pinching and suturing the fundus area which is part of the stomach. With reduced stomach space, you can curb your appetite and lose weight. However, you may regain weight. Thus, you should change the way you eat and plan to workout often to maintain your weight after the surgery.

Are We Trapped In The Vicious Cycle Of Weight Loss Pills

Weight Loss PillsThis article is a good reminder for anyone who is looking for a quick fix to their weight problems. Dr Danielle Ofri plainly explains how the weight loss pills are similar to lemons (used cars) that are sold in the market. Having read this article, you will understand why large pharmaceutical companies are willing to spend so much money to promote their weight loss products based on this simple analogy. Yet, many of us often take a high risk with this Band-Aid approach that may bring about undesirable health complications for the sake of losing just a few pounds.

Tuesday, May 15, 2012

Monday, May 14, 2012

Introducing ViPR The New Workout Tool

What is the one of hottest gym equipments today? It is no other than ViPR, a heavy rolled up piece of matting. You can lift, shift, pull, push, flip and roll it. You will get your whole body working out. The versatility of this new training equipment allows a person to work several muscles at the same time. This seems to be the better way to train rather than working out the muscles separately. It combines both strength training and movement training which makes you stronger than if you were to do just one type of training or the other. Imagine one equipment to replace your barbell, dumbbell, kettlebell and medicine ball. If you don't like to run but need a high cardio workout, use this. More and more fitness professionals are trying to get their hands on it.

Fight Brain Aging With Resistance Training

Resistance Training

Resistance training involves strengthening of the muscles by overcoming a resistance force. The most conventional way is to lift weights. But you can still use other forms of resistance workout without weights for example push-ups and elastic bands. Resistance training can be beneficial for older people especially if they experience declining age-related brain function. Just doing it once a week is already sufficient. Of course, the more the better. It is recommended that you perform 8 to 10 resistance workouts twice a week with 8 to 12 reps each.

For full article, read here.

Why Eating Fat Is Good For Your Health

Red Meat

Is fat really bad? We have been told many times to reduce fat if we want to live longer. However, it seems that eating fat is healthy for us. I mean all kinds of fat: saturated, monounsaturated and polyunsaturated. Why? If we remove fat from our diet, we are missing the most important component in our health. Fat is essential for an effective delivery system particularly for fat soluble vitamins such as A, D, E, and K. Moreover, fat gives you energy. And it can help you to control your appetite, preventing overeating. So should we eat more fat?

Read this eye-opening article on Bring back butter... and cheese, red meat and whole milk.

Sunday, May 13, 2012

Watch Out What You Eat For Breakfast

Full English Breakfast of Bacon and EggsPlease check what you eat for breakfast the next time. If you are eating a full English breakfast which usually consists of egg and bacon regularly, then you are likely to have love handles.

In 3 hours after your fat-rich breakfast, this fat will become fatty tissue. And it will be stored around your waist. If you continue to follow this poor eating habit, pretty soon your buttocks, thighs, and hips will be become bigger, thanks to the accumulation of fat.

One way to deal with this fat is to exercise. In fact, if you are fit, it would be easier for you to burn this unwanted fat.

Check out this study by Oxford University.

Why You Don't Lose Weight After Workout

WorkoutAfter working out vigorously, you expect to lose a lot of weight. But this does not happen all the times. Maybe your body uses fat instead of carbohydrate for fuel. Or your digestion process is too slow. However, you may eat too much after working out. Probably it is time to change how you reward yourself after workout.

Read the full article.

Friday, May 11, 2012

How To Beat Weight Loss Plateaus By Making Changes In Your Workout And Diet

Weighing Scale

Have you come to a point that no matter what you do, your weighing scale won't budge? You probably have hit the weight loss plateau. This happens when you see no or little improvement in your weight status after two weeks of regular workout and dieting. Let's see what you can do to break out from this plateau. It all comes down to your workout and diet.

Not So Obvious Workout Routine

If you are following the same fitness routine, in less than a month your body will adapt to it. It is best that you have several types of workouts. This allows you to have different workouts each day without any obvious pattern.

If you want to escape from the plateau, be more active a few times a day. This can help you to burn more calories and increase your metabolism. For example, you can schedule to have your aerobic workout in the morning and strength training in the evening. It is fine to combine both aerobic exercises such as running, kick-boxing, and swimming and weight training or strength training such as squats and lunges on the same day.

To prevent boredom in your fitness regimen, include high intensity workouts to maintain your high metabolism and burn fat faster.

Don't forget weight training. It can develop lean muscle mass. The more muscle mass you have, the more calories you burn. And you can use lighter weights to enjoy the same benefits as heavier weights. The secret is to lift until your muscles reach the point of exhaustion.

By being creative with your workouts, you can burn more fat and increase your metabolism which will break the weight loss plateau.

Tweak Your Diet

Be careful about how much carbohydrates you consume because your body tends to pile up carbs when they are not used. The more carbs you eat, the more glycogen your body will store. Glycogen is the result of unused carbs. Another fact you must know is that your body will retain 3 to 4 grams of water for each gram of glycogen your body keeps. As your body accumulate more glycogen, your weight will increase because of the water retention.

If you have been eating processed high carbohydrate foods, then stop. Instead substitute them with natural carbs like whole grains, fresh vegetables and fruits that contain lots of water and air. Eating these healthy carbs will make you eat less because of their rich content of water and air.

You may resort to low-carb diet to crush weight loss plateaus. It is a mistake. Over time, your body will starve. And it is natural for your body to respond to starvation. This will stop the low-carb diet from working.

A better way is eat more frequently. Don't get the wrong idea that you are eating more. Basically, you break down your three main meals to four or five times a day. Make sure that you have sufficient calories for the whole day. Smaller meals not only boost your metabolism but also stop you from feeling hungry.

Are you getting enough fiber? Do you know a gram of fiber can get rid of seven calories? Start eating more fibrous foods. It also helps to speed up your digestion. That requires fuel. In other words, you use more calories.

Don't forget to drink water before meals. One study highlighted that subjects who drank two cups of water before meals not only lost significant weight but consumed less calories.

By making these adjustments in your workout and diet, you should be on your way to seeing more movement on your weighing scale.

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Bariatric Surgery Gives Hope To Obese Women With Irregular And No Periods

[caption id="attachment_92" align="aligncenter" width="600" caption="Weight Loss Surgery"]Weight Loss Surgery[/caption]

Obesity can cause women to have irregular periods or none at all. Getting pregnant is not easy. Bariatric surgery may give hope for obese women to be fertile again. During the annual meeting of the American College of Obstetricians and Gynecologists, in San Diego, a study showed that after the surgery, most women experienced regular menstruation and healthy hair growth. This study involved obese women who had problems with their menses.

Read the full story here.

Thursday, May 10, 2012

How To Build Muscle Mass With Lighter Weights


As you age, your muscle mass begins to shrink. Cardio workout alone can't help you to maintain muscle mass. You need resistance training to maintain or build muscles. Most bodybuilders are dogmatic about the weight used in strength training. Ask any bodybuilder about developing bulk muscles and most of the time, they'll tell you to use heavy weights. In fact, for traditional weight training, you need to do 80-percent-of-maximum lifting for 8 to 10 reps. This can be demanding for most older people.

Recently, I read an article on ScienceDaily and as far as muscle building is concerned, surprisingly, it almost makes no difference whether you're lifting heavy or light weights provided you do it right.

Well, does it make sense? After all, we've been led to believe that lifting heavy weights is the key to muscle mass. Based on the study that was published in the Journal of Applied Physiology, it is not the weight that matters but whether or not you have carried those weights to the point of fatigue. The study revealed that the two groups who lifted light and heavy loads received similar gains in muscle volume.

In other words, do you feel exhausted to the extent that you can no longer carry on? I think you need to work out until your muscles are so worn out that they cannot do another repetition. Therefore, you don't have to worry about the amount of weight that is used.

This is good news for those with joint problems. I have back pain which doesn't allow me to lift heavy weights. So I use lighter weights as long as it doesn't hurt my back. With this new information, all I have to do is perform as many reps as possible. And yes, it'll definitely take a longer time to complete as compared to heavier weights.

So how light should be your weight and how many reps should you perform at least? You should lift 30 percent of maximum weight for 25 to 30 reps or until your muscles feel too fatigue to continue.

If you feel your muscle mass is diminishing and you want to stay active, then I suggest that you get some new proteins into your muscles with these adjustable dumbbells. Whether you want lighter or heavier weights, you can swap the weight easily with little interruption.

Wednesday, May 9, 2012

How Testosterone Injections Can Help Obese Men To Lose Weight

[caption id="attachment_82" align="aligncenter" width="407" caption="Are you obese?"]obesity[/caption]

Your sexual behavior and brain development are dependent upon testosterone which is released by your testes. When you pass the age of 40, the level of testosterone begins to drop. Some studies show that reduced levels of testosterone in older men double the risk of obesity. Some scientists believe that when the testosterone level is low, you'll experience insomnia, depression, and lack of concentration. Furthermore, the risk of getting type 2 diabetes and high blood pressure is two times more than other men with healthy levels of testosterone.

Recently, Dr Farid Saad published a study at the 19th European Congress on Obesity in Lyon, France which suggested that older obese men could lose weight by using testosterone supplements. In this study, he and his colleagues examined the results of 215 men between the ages of 38 and 83 after being injected with 1,000 milligrams of testosterone. By the end of 6 weeks, they were administered with testosterone again. Then followed with a 12-week interval of similar jabs until the study was completed. These men suffered a deficiency of testosterone which caused them to experience erectile dysfunction, low energy and tiredness. In one particular group of 115 men which they studied for 5 years, they noted a few interesting insights.

  1. They lost 35 pounds.

  2. Their waistlines were reduced on average from 42 inches to 38.5 inches.

  3. Their testosterone levels were restored to normal.

  4. Their blood pressure dropped.

  5. Their LDL bad cholesterol decreased

Why did they lose weight? Could it be because of testosterone? Other researchers explained that when your testosterone level increases, you've more energy, making you feel stronger. Obviously you'll be more inclined to work out. Furthermore, your lean body mass increases as well.

There are two concerns with higher testosterone levels which are prevalent in other studies: the risk of developing prostate cancer and heart disease. In this study, no men was found to be diagnosed with prostate cancer.

Is testosterone a miracle cure for obesity? How far are you willing to risk your life by subjecting yourself to the possibility of getting either prostate cancer or heart disease or maybe both?

For 5 years, these obese men only lost 35 pounds. That's not a lot. Although their mean body mass index (BMI) were reduced from 34 to 29, they were considered to be overweight instead of obese. But they were still overweight.

I strongly feel testosterone is not an ideal solution for weight loss. What happens if you stop taking this hormone replacement therapy? Some doctors warn that your testosterone level will drop even further if you decide not to continue anymore with the therapy. Why would you want to depend on a single hormone to reach your ideal weight?

You may find a lot of weight loss aids in the market that can help you temporarily. But what really works is a change of lifestyle. This includes your diet and workout. Choosing the right foods and a fitness program is a safe way to boost your testosterone level and beat obesity.

Check out which elliptical machines you should get for maximum weight loss.

Photo Credit: Teh epicness